• Saguaro National Park to Redington Road


  • 24.6 miles

Southern Access Point: Saguaro National Park

  • NOTE: This trailhead is not directly accessible by vehicles. The nearest vehicle access is 2.8 miles west on the Hope Camp Trail at the Loma Alta Trailhead at 32.13294° N, 110.68700° W. There is limited parking with trailer parking 0.25 miles south.
  • GPS Coordinates: 32.12964° N, 110.64472° W


Hope Camp: No vehicle access; 3 miles required to reach the Hope Camp TH. On Old Spanish Trail, travel approximately 7 miles southeast of the Saguaro National Park Visitor Center, or go 4 miles northwest of Colossal Cave Mountain Park on Old Spanish Trail, then turn north on Camino Loma Alta Road. Go about 2.5 miles until it ends at a small trailhead/parking area. Travel 3 miles east on Hope Camp Trail to historic Hope Camp.

Northern Access Point: Redington Road


From Tucson, head east on Tanque Verde Road, which becomes Redington Pass Road after you leave the city. The road turns to dirt near mile marker 3. From that point, continue to just past mile marker 12 on Redington Pass Road. At the top of a small ridge the AZT crosses Redington Road. There are AZT signs on both sides of the road.

Trail Route Description

Passage 9 enters Saguaro National Park and climbs into the Rincon Mountains. This section features a challenging climb with extreme changes in elevation and climate, incredible biodiversity, and spectacular views. 

The route begins in a corner of the desert which has some of the world’s richest saguaro stands. These iconic cacti are unique to the Sonoran Desert and a special feature of the AZT.

In the first 14 miles, the trail gains over 6,000 feet of elevation and travels through six different biotic communities: desert scrub, desert grassland, oak woodlands, pine–oak woodlands, pine forests, and mixed-conifer forests. Hundreds of different plant species are supported by this variety of biomes! Like many of the other sky island passages, it is not uncommon to find a snow-covered trail in the higher elevations. 

The climb ends at a trail junction just below Mica Mountain, the highest point in the Rincons. From this junction, a short side trip leads to the peak, which would add 0.4-mile to the total distance of this passage.

From here, the trail descends the north side of the Rincons. After a series of switchbacks the trees begin to thin, giving way to sweeping views across a vast and rugged landscape to the east.

Note that Saguaro National Park prohibits dispersed backcountry camping and requires permits and reservations for overnight camping at Grass Shack or Manning Camp in addition to a park entry permit. You must have both permits with you while inside Saguaro National Park, and permit compliance is strictly enforced.

NO FIRES are allowed inside Saguaro National Park.


  • Moderate to Difficult


  • All year. Snow can be present at higher elevations after winter storms and lower elevations can be quite warm in summer
  • Current weather forecast


Water can be found seasonally in the following locations: Chimenea Creek, Grass Shack Campground, Madrona Canyon and Italian Spring. Manning Camp usually has water.  Check the online Arizona Trail Water Report for current information at https://aztrail.org/explore/water-sources/.


  • All water along this passage should be purified prior to use.
  • Mountain bikes are prohibited in the Rincon Mountain Wilderness.
  • Saguaro National Park requires all hikers to obtain an entrance permit as well as a camping permit at designated Campgrounds (Grass Shack and Manning). Dispersed camping is prohibited. Go here to learn more about obtaining your permits.
  • Fires are not allowed within Saguaro National Park.


  • Map of Passage 9
  • USGS Topographic Maps: Tanque Verde Peak, Mica Mountain and Piety Hill.
  • Saguaro National Park map.
  • Rincon Mountain Wilderness map.
  • Coronado National Forest map.

For more information

Current Passage Info

Saguaro NP Reopens Trails and Campgrounds on Mica Mountain Closed Due to Fire in Rincons

Saguaro NP Reopens Trails and Campgrounds on Mica Mountain Closed Due to Fire in Rincons

Tucson, AZ – Saguaro National Park announces the reopening of Spud Rock and Manning Camp Campgrounds and all trails closed due to the Mica Bowl and Spud Rock Fires burning on Mica Mountain in the east district of the park.  The Mica Bowl Fire has been burning within natural features with minimal fire activity, no observable smoke, and no growth since August 29.  The Spud Rock Fire is 100% contained as of Friday, September 11.  It remains 760 acres in size and firefighters have been working to repair the trail system used as holding line, as well as rehabilitating sensitive habitat and other resource values at risk from the fire.      Camping permits for all six wilderness campgrounds, including the Manning Camp and Spud Rock Campgrounds, in Saguaro National Park can be only be obtained from Recreation.gov website.    Hikers should use extra caution and stay on the trail when hiking through burned areas.  There may still be some fire burning, including within stump holes causing weak and unstable ground which may be difficult to identify.  Trails may be slick with fallen pine needles or ash and some fire weakened trees may still fall.  Watch for flash flooding, rolling debris...
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Saguaro National Park Closes All Bathrooms

Saguaro National Park is announcing modifications to operations to implement the latest guidance from the White House, Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC), and local and state authorities to promote social distancing. As of March 24, 2020, all front country restrooms and comfort stations in both districts of the park will be closed until further notice.  Visitor centers remain closed and fee collection operations are temporarily suspended until further notice.  All public programming continues to be cancelled until further notice. The health and safety of National Park Service (NPS) visitors, employees, volunteers, and partners is our number one priority. Where it is possible to adhere to federal, state, and local health guidance, outdoor spaces will remain accessible to the public, including trails and wilderness campsites. Visitors should come prepared to experience the park without expectation of toilets, handwashing or hand sanitation to be available. The NPS is taking extraordinary steps to implement the latest guidance from state and local authorities, which support the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention’s (CDC) efforts to promote social distancing and slow the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19).  As states and local governments announce further efforts to combat COVID-19, decisions on modifications to park operations are being...
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Camping Permits Required

Users are reminded that camping permits are required in Saguaro National Park. It is approximately nine miles from the south Park boundary to Grass Shack Campground, 13.8 miles to Manning Camp and 17.7 miles to the north Park boundary, the next camping options northbound. Because of sensitive cultural resources near Hope Camp, strict enforcement of NPS camping regulations is expected. Saguaro National Park camping permits are available at recreation.gov  starting February 1, 2020. The Visitor Center will not issue permits in person after January 31, 2020. Permit reservations are taken 2 months in advance of the permitted start of a trip. Outstanding camp locations exist along Rincon Creek south of the park boundary. If camping off the AZT right-of-way here a State Recreation permit is required.
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